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Discussion Starter #1
I made my own composting bin last saturday out of old 2x8s. I made it the same size as an old storm window I had laying around so I could put that on top. I left about 1/2" to 3/4" between the boards for venting.

I dumped in grass clipping, rabbit manure, black dirt and fruit/veggie food scrapes.

I've had the window covering ever since and have been taking temp readings once in awhile to see what its doing. Weather had been sunny and mid 80's. I took a temp late afternoon and the hottest spot I could find was 145*, but most of it was mid 90's. Today has been cloudy and rainy, I went out and turned it for the first time and the internal temp was about 100*. (outside temp mid 70s)

Am I over cooking this stuff or is this a good way to speed up the process?

:thanku:
 

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life is good
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You're not over cooking it, but there's really no need for the window on the top.
The center of the pile is where the heat will come from as the microbes "eat/digest" the material to be composted. I've seen a really hot pile before, was steaming in 100* heat.
Keeping the pile moist and turning it every week or so is best.
If you want it to go a bit faster add a sugar source, like dried molasses.
This will give the microbes extra energy.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
i'm trying to do the "hot composting", well kinda, i'm learning as i'm going. i was hoping to boost the over all temp with the window on top. i don't know how long it normally takes for the temp to go up after starting but i already had steam going after two days.

after watching this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Jm-c9B2_ew&NR=1&feature=fvwp i'm daydreaming of heating my garage from compost during the winter. it would take a lot bigger pile to last very long though. and when i say "heating" i mean keeping the temp above 40*.

:D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
i'll ask my neighbor, he has rabbits and pigeons.
my other neighbor has been giving me his melon and banana peals.

i've heard rabbit manure is pretty safe bacterial wise, how is pigeon manure?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
just turned the pile again. i've been doing it every morning. i noticed it was really dry all the way through so i dumped in about 4 gals of water.

do you guys think it would hold the water in better if i didn't have the window on top?
maybe its baking all the water out or maybe the water is just seeping out the bottom?
 

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I would take it alittle easy on turning it. I like to turn my once a week. Also if you add about a jar of urine once in a while it will help it too.
 

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All you can do is make the environment for the compost to work. You cannot change the way Mother Nature works. Give it a chance.
 
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